AMN Reviews: Los Angeles Percussion Quartet – Beyond [Sono Luminus DSL-92214]

More than for any other kind of ensemble, it would seem, success for a percussion ensemble depends on the deft integration of timbre and space. Percussion instruments—made of wood, metal, glass–encompass a broad spectrum of sound colors and seem to want the space, alone or in combination, to let those colors make an impression. With their vast array of standard and non-standard percussion instruments, The Los Angeles Percussion Quartet—Matt Cook, Justin DeHart, Cory Hills and Nick Terry—positively revels in timbral variety. Not only vibes, drums, marimba and glockenspiels, which they strike, bow and rub, but metal sheets; pipes and planks; struck and bowed vessels containing water; and a miscellany of objects too idiosyncratic to mention. And in the five compositions they realize in Beyond, their third album, they show a sensitivity to the way space helps define sound by clarifying structure.

Beyond is formatted as a three-disc collection—two CDs and a Blu-ray surround-sound audio disc. The highlight of CD One is Christopher Cerrone’s beautiful five-part suite Memory Palace for percussion, odd instruments, and electronics. The odd instruments include tuned metal pipes, tuned cut wood slats, wine bottles filled with different volumes of water to produce different pitches, and a restrung cheap guitar. On the face of it, these objects are little more than detritus rescued from a rubbish heap, but their effects are distinctly musical. The guitar–a somewhat surprising presence in a percussion ensemble–gives the first section its characteristic sound. The wood slats stand at the center of the second section, carrying a melody hinting at harmonic cadences; section three effortlessly folds the sound of the metal pipes into a recording of wind chimes made at Cerrone’s parents’ house. The fourth section’s rhythmic pulses played tremolando on wood provide a refracted image of the second section, while the piece concludes in an appropriately reflective atmosphere carried on the electronics’ simple I-IV-V harmonies.

The disc’s opening piece, Daníel Bjarnason’s Qui Tollis, shapes musical space through dynamics as well as sound density. Beginning with a quiet rattling of metal, the piece gradually builds with vibes before settling into a muscular rhythm underscored by bass drums which then recedes into silence. Disc One also includes composer Ellen Reid’s Fear-Release, an episodic work featuring composite timbres fusing the high resonance of metal with the hollow thump of large drums, and Anna Thorvaldsdottir’s sparely dramatic Aura, a work to be performed in the dark with three of the percussionists circling the stationary fourth.

Andrew McIntosh’s forty-minute-long I Hold the Lion’s Paw fills CD Two and is also presented in surround-sound on the Blu-ray disc. Like Aura, which programs musical space as a function of literal space, I Hold the Lion’s Paw makes the physical location of the players a factor within its compositional structure. The musicians and instruments are dispersed—ideally, they surround the audience—in such a way as to give phrases the appearance of extension in space as well as in time. Space, both aural and physical, doesn’t carve the music at the joints so much as it is the joints, binding and separating sequences of sounds and marking the beginnings and endings of small- and large-scale structural elements. The sounds themselves tend to be grouped into single timbre clusters or clusters of related timbres; a salient feature of the piece’s tonal makeup is the use of microsounds, such as are obtained from a set of aluminum pipes tuned to quarter tones, and bowls whose pitch is raised and lowered according to changes in the amount of water they contain. The end result is an uncluttered play of rhythms and colors that rewards patient listening.

http://sonoluminus.com

Daniel Barbiero

All About Jazz Reviews

Olver Lake

Source: All About Jazz.

Martin Küchen
The Spirit Of Piteşti (Clean Feed Records)

Satoko Fujii / Natsuki Tamura
Kisaragi (Libra Records)

Hanging Hearts
Into a Myth (Shifting Paradigm Records)

Stephan Micus
Inland Sea (ECM Records)

Daunik Lazro
Garden(s) (Ayler Records)

Charles Rumback
Threes (Ears And Eyes Records)

The Master Musicians Of Jajouka & Material
Apocalypse Live (M.O.D. Technologies)

Per Gärdin/Pedro Lopes/Rodrigo Pinheiro
History Of The Lisbon Chaplaincy (Creative Sources Recordings)

Oliver Lake
Right Up On (Passin’ Thru Records)

Morton Feldman
Piano, Violin, Viola, Cello (Another Timbre)

This Week in New York 

Source: I CARE IF YOU LISTEN.

LIMINAL HIGHWAY & IN A GROVE | TIM MUNRO AND CHRISTOPHER CERRONE
An evening of flute and electronics with flutist Tim Munro plus a scene from a new opera in development by composer Christopher Cerrone.
Tuesday, July 18 at 7:00 PM
Tickets $16.74, $11.49 students
Metropolis Ensemble, 1 Rivington Street, 2nd Floor, New York, NY

SMALL SPHERE AND HEAVY SPHERE, 1932/33
Calder: Hypermobility features an expansive series of performances and events, bringing contemporary artists into dialogue with Alexander Calder as they interplay their own disparate practices with his innovations. The first event of the series will feature artist and composer Christian Marclay in performance with cellist Okkyung Lee. Marclay will activate Small Sphere and Heavy Sphere, 1932/33, Calder’s first hanging mobile. Lee will respond musically to the movement qualities, sonic elements, and visual nature of the piece.
Wednesday, July 19 & Thursday, July 20 at 8:00 PM
Tickets $22, $18 members/students/seniors
Whitney Museum of American Art, Floor Three, Susan and John Hess Family Theater, 99 Gansevoort Street, New York, NY

SUBOTNICK | LINCOLN CENTER FESTIVAL
Morton Subotnick (photo credit: timara.oberlin.edu)Morton Subotnick (photo credit: timara.oberlin.edu)
Subotnick presides over his onstage studio, revisiting his 1967 piece Silver Apples of the Moon live. Then, out of complete darkness emerges Crowds and Power, a media tone poem for voice, electronic sound, and live imagery inspired by Elias Canetti’s troubling and eternally relevant book. Vocalist Joan La Barbara performs the central character and Berlin-based artist Lillevan provides a live visual environment in this world premiere performance.
Thursday, July 20 to Saturday, July 22 at 8:30 PM
Tickets $50
Stanley H. Kaplan Penthouse, Lincoln Center, New York, NY

SMALL SPHERE AND HEAVY SPHERE, 1932/33
Calder: Hypermobility features an expansive series of performances and events, bringing contemporary artists into dialogue with Alexander Calder as they interplay their own disparate practices with his innovations. The first event of the series will feature artist and composer Christian Marclay in performance with cellist Okkyung Lee. Marclay will activate Small Sphere and Heavy Sphere, 1932/33, Calder’s first hanging mobile. Lee will respond musically to the movement qualities, sonic elements, and visual nature of the piece.
Friday, July 21 at 1:00 PM
Tickets $22, $18 members/students/seniors
http://whitney.org/Events/SmallSphereAndHeavySphere

DOWNTOWNMUSIC.NET Photos

Source: DOWNTOWNMUSIC.NET.

July 7, 2017
Pascal Niggenkemper Solo, Smeltehytta, Kongsberg
Pascal Niggenkemper

July 7, 2017
Ståle Liavik Solberg & Paal Nilssen-Love, Smeltehytta, Kongsberg
Paal Nilssen-Love Ståle Liavik Solberg

July 7, 2017
Sarah Gail Brand & Mark Sanders, Smeltehytta, Kongsberg
Sarah Gail Brand Mark Sanders

July 7, 2017
Konge, Smeltehytta, Kongsberg
Signe Emmeluth Mats Gustafsson Kresten Osgood Ole Morten Vågan

July 7, 2017
Live & Lien, Christians Kjeller, Kongsberg
Helge Lien Live Maria Roggen

July 7, 2017
Art Ensemble of Chicago, Energimølla, Kongsberg
Roscoe Mitchell Famoudou Don Moye Hugh Ragin Jaribu Shahid

July 7, 2017
Vidar Busk & Daniel Eriksen, Gamle Norge, Kongsberg
Vidar Busk Daniel Eriksen

July 7, 2017
Pan-Scan Ensemble, Smeltehytta, Kongsberg
Lotte Anker Anna Högberg Thomas Johansson Goran Kajfeš Julie Kjær Paal Nilssen-Love Sten Sandell Ståle Liavik Solberg Emil Strandberg

Bang On A Can Festival Is Making Some Noise Again This Summer in North Adams, MA

Source: ZEALnyc.

Thirty years after their debut concert—a day-long marathon concert of experimental music in a SoHo art gallery—the founders of Bang on a Can, the composer trifecta of Michael Gordon, Julia Wolfe, and David Lang, remain committed to their mission of creating and presenting innovative and experimental music. At the core of this project is the annual Bang on a Can Summer Festival, a professional development program for up-and-coming composers and performers held at the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art (MASS MoCA) in North Adams, MA.